Sleep expert reveals the best length and time to take a perfect nap

Must See 18/03/2022

Taking a nap helps so much even if it’s a power nap when you have had a short or a bad night's sleep. 

Sleep expert Kiera Pritchard shared the exact length of time one should nap in order to get the perfect nap. 

The perfect nap is either between 10-20 minutes or 90 minutes. A normal sleep cycle averages for 90 minutes starting from lighter stages of sleep to deeper. 

Although it is tempting and it feels efficient to sleep for half an hour (30 minutes) or exactly an hour (60 minutes), the sleep expert has revealed that these lengths of time may leave you feeling ‘groggy and drowsy’ which is ‘not ideal if you have to focus for the rest of the day.' This happens because these time lengths may lead you to experience ‘sleep inertia’ when you wake up, meaning it’s the final stage between sleep and wakefulness. 

So a power nap of 10-20 minutes is recommended as it is great for boosting energy and alertness. 

Kiera added: "During a power nap, you stay in the first two stages of non-rapid eye movement – these are the lightest stages of sleep, which means you’ll wake up easily.

"Power naps provide immediate benefits. They boost alertness and performance levels and can decrease any feelings of sleepiness."

According to Kiera,the perfect length of nap is 90 minutes as it allows you to complete a sleep cycle. 

She said, “Waking up from these naps is generally easy.

"Since you experience each stage of sleep and wake up back at stage one, these naps leave you feeling refreshed and more awake, so they don’t cause sleep inertia like an hour-long nap can.

"A full sleep cycle can boost creativity and improve procedural and emotional memory. However, you should avoid taking 90 minute naps within seven hours of your scheduled bedtime to ensure it doesn’t interfere with your nightly sleep."

Kiera explains that the best time to take a nap is usually "six to eight hours after waking".

She added "For more people, this time is typically somewhere between 1 and 3pm.

There is also a sleep calculator which calculates what time you should wake up in the morning to feel refreshed.